Background: The threshold to perform total pancreatectomy is rather high, predominantly because of concerns for long-term consequences of brittle diabetes on patients' quality of life. Contemporary data on postoperative outcomes, diabetes management, and long-term quality of life after total pancreatectomy from large nationwide series are, however, lacking.
Methods: We performed a nationwide, retrospective cohort study among adults who underwent total pancreatectomy in 17 Dutch centers (2006-2016). Morbidity and mortality were analyzed, and long-term quality of life was assessed cross-sectionally using the following generic and disease-specific questionnaires: the 5-level version European quality of life 5-dimension and the European Organization for Research and Treatment in Cancer Quality of Life Questionnaire Cancer. Several questionnaires specifically addressing diabetic quality of life included the Problem Areas in Diabetes Scale 20, the Diabetes Treatment Satisfaction Questionnaire-status version, and the Hypoglycemia Fear Survey-II. Results were compared with the general population and patients with type 1 diabetes.
Results: Overall, 148 patients after total pancreatectomy were included. The annual nationwide volume of total pancreatectomy increased from 5 in 2006 to 32 in 2015 (P < .05). The 30-day and 90-day mortality were 5% and 8%, respectively. The major complication rate was 32%. Quality of life questionnaires were completed by 60 patients (85%, median follow-up of 36 months). Participants reported lower global (73 vs 78, P = .03) and daily health status (0.83 vs 0.87, P < .01) compared to the general population. Quality of life did not differ based on time after total pancreatectomy (<3, 3-5, or >5 years). In general, patients were satisfied with their diabetes therapy and experienced similar diabetes-related distress as patients with type 1 diabetes.
Conclusion: This nationwide study found increased use of total pancreatectomy with a relatively high 90-day mortality. Long-term quality of life was lower compared to the general population, although differences were small. Diabetes-related distress and treatment satisfaction were similar to patients with type 1 diabetes.
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